09 Aug In Conversation with Luke Brady, Savills’ Head of the Bath office and Southern residential division
Savills, the renowned estate agents, have over 35,000 people working for them in more than 60 countries worldwide. Their Bath office, run by Luke Brady, is one of the best places to visit if you are wanting to buy or invest in a Georgian property in Bath or Bristol. Luke’s team have vast knowledge of the area and a great understanding of the economic climate that surrounds the local and regional housing market currently. Etons of Bath’s Creative Director, Sarah Latham talks Georgian property investment and markets and asks Luke for the inside track:
Luke Brady, image courtesy of Savills
What drew you to working in the property sector in Bath?
Having grown up in the Dorset countryside and then my first agency jobs in South West London, I was lucky enough to have an opportunity to come to Bath. It gives me the best of both worlds; a vibrant city centre, fine architecture and surrounded by beautiful countryside. At the same time, my wife came to study her PGCE at Bath Spa University.
How long have you lived in Bath and what do you love most about the city?
I’ve lived in Bath since 2003. What I love about this city is that it is small enough to walk from one side to another, yet easy enough to get out of the centre. I love rugby do I enjoy watching Bath playing at The Rec which is right in the heart of the city. But above all, it has been a wonderful place to bring up our three children as there is excellent schooling, first class sports and cultural facilities.
Do you have a favourite property to date that you have sold and why?
The highlight of my career was overseeing the sale of the Grade I listed Widcombe Manor, which is arguably Bath’s most beautiful house set in 9 acres within the city and in walking distance of the station.
Widcombe Manor, image courtesy of Savills
How do you feel the property market in Bath is doing right now?
It has changed significantly since the financial crisis took hold in 2008. We have noticed that prime city centre markets have out-performed the neighbouring country markets by a great deal, and this is a picture mirrored across similar locations such as Oxford and Cambridge. This has resulted in significant price growth within these locations, despite national prices really only being on par with the previous peak of June 2007. We see at best a static market as we approach March 2019 (the deadline for Brexit). Mostly this is caused by political uncertainty, higher taxation and a quieter market in London. It is our belief that once we know the direction that Brexit will take and some certain returns, activity will revert to normal. The grown forecast for the wider South of England and Wales in 2018 is 1% but over the next 5 years is 14.2%.
Tell us about some of your current Georgian property listings.
Tylehurst, Sion Hill – one of Lansdown’s finest Grade 2 listed detached houses with stunning views over Bath.
Tylehurst, image courtesy of Savills
18 St James’s Square – prestigious Grade I listed townhouse on the desirable north side of St James’s Square, offering 6 spacious bedrooms and a triple garage.
18 St James’ Square image courtesy of Savills
23 Bathwick Hill – a magnificent Grade II listed Georgian Villa with spectacular views over the neighbouring National Trust land to the city of Bath beyond.
23 Bathwick Hill image courtesy of Savills
2 Cavendish Crescent – a fine Grade II listed family house in the delightful Cavendish Crescent with the potential for a self-contained lower ground floor apartment.
2 Cavendish Crescent image courtesy of Savills
In terms of Georgian properties in Bath and Somerset, what are buyers looking for right now in terms of property/style? (e.g traditional interiors or more contemporary?)
The vast majority of our buyers moving from outside of the area into Bath (including overseas buyers), move here for the Georgian architecture. Most are looking to achieve a balance between original Georgian features and proportions, with high-end contemporary fixtures, fittings and furnishings. Effectively, it is a character property with architectural detailing typical of the period, alongside all the convenience of a modern house inside.
If you need any help with design, refurbishment or renovation of Georgian or listed property in Bath or Bristol, contact us today on 01225639002